Micky Mellon hits out at ‘cheap’ penalty after Tranmere denied win at Barrow


Micky Mellon believed Tranmere were on the wrong end of two penalty calls as a Rovers old boy came back to haunt his former club in a 1-1 draw with Barrow

Manager Mellon described the decision to award a second-half handball against Josh Dacres-Cogley as “cheap.”

And Ollie Banks added further punishment by sending Ross Doohan the wrong way for his 11th of the season after 58 minutes.

That cancelled out a 16th-minute opener from Josh Hawkes.

Mellon also felt the visitors were denied a “stonewaller” for a first-half pull on Kane Hemmings.

“It was a cheap, harsh penalty,” said Mellon of Banks’ successful spot-kick.

“It was probably the only way Barrow were going to get back in the game.

“But I didn’t understand quite a few things the referee did.

“We had a stonewall penalty ourselves when the fourth official told the referee that Hemmings’ shirt was virtually ripped off his back for everyone to see. But he paid no attention.

“I did feel having played against the wind and got a goal up we could have handled conditions better with the wind.

“I think the fans touched the ball more than they will ever touch it because of the gale.

“So, it was a hard-fought point in unbelievable conditions. It was as tough an afternoon because of the weather I have taken part in for a long while.

“We were excellent in the conditions in the first half and we could have gone in with a couple more goals. But you respect every point on the road.”

Hawkes deservedly put Tranmere in front with his first goal since signing permanently from Sunderland. And but for a great block by Tom Beadling, Hemmings might have doubled their advantage.

Barrow, bolstered by the return of fans’ favourite John Rooney and Niall Canavan, have now picked up four points from a possible six to ease away from the bottom two.

“The weather spoilt the game,” agreed Bluebirds’ chief Mark Cooper. “Both sides played better with the wind in their faces. It was a lottery at times.

“After the first-half performance you have got to be happy with the point. But having watched the second half we are disappointed not to have nicked it.

“We had two wonderful chances – one really good save (from Rooney) and then a defender flicking the ball off (Aaron) Holloway’s head.

“For all the money it looked like he was going to head it into an open goal. That would have been sweet.

“Once we got the penalty we had a head of steam up to win it. But it’s been a good week.

“If the players have a go, the nature of the division will throw up chances for you.”

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